Faffing with covers

So after yesterday’s good intentions, I didn’t get any new writing done for The Beast Within. Once I’d done a load of routine stuff, my mind was still whirling with the story ideas for the next 3 Marcie Craig books.

I love visuals when I’m working, and the brighter and more colourful or striking the better.

When I’m working in Scrivener, and when I’m doing NaNoWriMo, I always design and upload a cover. I already had cover designs for Snowblind and The Beast Within, and I wanted to add Flowers to the Rain to the Scrivener binder.

And so I had a faff.

But I didn’t just faff with Flowers in the Rain. No, I also had to faff with the other two as well.

All of my Marcie Craig story titles are titles of songs by Birmingham (preferably) or Midland rock bands. Night Crawler is by Judas Priest, The Beast Within is by The Handsome Beasts, Snowblind is by Black Sabbath, and Flowers in the Rain is by The Move.

All of these song titles either originally appeared on albums, or they were featured on later albums.  So my book covers try to emulate those album covers.

I couldn’t just rip-off the album artwork and I’m not sure I could afford a reproduction fee for the original artwork, or if, indeed, that would be possible (but I’m more than willing to consider it if any of those bands or artists are watching!).

And so I create my own. One day I’ll re-do the cover for Night Crawler too …

… but I’ve always struggled to find a winged metal monster riding a monster motorbike in the skies above a fiery landscape – although I was happy to change the fiery landscape to the Birmingham skyline.

Both of the previous Night Crawler covers have been very loose emulations of the album cover … The large print version was really nice, but that one was out of my hands.

Now, all of the books (including the new one by the time I’d finished with it) had “a Marcie Craig mystery” along the top of the cover, either against the book cover design itself or in a box. But when we were looking at them last night, the poet suggested running the strapline down the woman’s leg on The Beast Within.

I tried that and I liked it, and so I did something similar for the Snowblind cover. And I liked that too. But Flowers in the Rain had to stay where it was …

… until the poet asked if I could curve the text. I didn’t think I could, but … (announcement!) Canva now has curved text! They’ve probably had it for ages, but I only discovered it yesterday!

If I do go with these covers, I’ll need new artwork for The Beast Within as the one currently used is a mock-up and there are still hash-lines against the black and the white when it’s blown up (i.e. to full book cover size). The others are already bona fide graphics permitted for commercial use.

Note: I’ll only use these covers (or something like them) if I self-publish. All 3 books will be going off to publishers and, if successful, I probably won’t have any control over the covers at all. So these are currently just for my own use.